The Power of Persistence – Pushing through the Mantra

The key to one’s success in life is an absolute refusal to quit. Persistence, you see, usually pays off. Persistence most often pays off. Persistence damn well had better pay off!

2012-11-05 04.07.58
The Trifextra challenge for this weekend is to follow the structure from James’ quote below, with a max 33 word limit:

Three things in human life are important. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. And the third is to be kind. –Henry James

I’m especially fond of James’ quote and wish more folks would live by it. As for my copycat version, it requires folks simply to keep living at all as the main criteria to meet its mark.

Related Article:

Why Dilapidated Love Trumps All

Travel Theme: Sculpture

Ailsa, at Where’s My Backpack? has put out a travel photography challenge this week on Sculpture.


Come travel into my classroom and see the anatomical sculptures my students make:

Playdough Lab 1

Playdough Lab 2…and then…how we slice through the model organs and vessels to better understand body & scan planes.

(This little exercise also helps them to understand that I carry a cleaver to class with me…just kidding, of course!)


Why Dilapidated Love Trumps All

She loved him, not just because he had withstood his projected passing of time in their relationship, but because he’d proven he was willing to weather all manner of harsh conditions on behalf of her and others. It was as if he sensed how much she loved being a part of this place, how in love she was with the people of this land, how desperate she was each and every time to lend a hand when they were at their greatest need. And he showed he understood by consistently coming through.

A twinge of guilt sometimes ran through her whenever she thought about her original suspicions the day he’d first come into her life. She had grimaced that his tint couldn’t have been a worse match for her – all sparkly white – as he exited the cargo plane without exhibiting even the tiniest flaw on his body. “Whew, you are gorgeous,” she’d mumbled. “You won’t fit in here.” She’d begrudgingly slid behind his wheel. He’d revved in protest to her claim as they’d crunched through underbrush; bounced through merciless, mud-filled potholes; crossed a river whose flow didn’t cease across his floorboards. He’d wanted her to understand that wasn’t going to dampen his spirits.

By the time they’d reached their destination and the mud had sufficiently baked into his body, he could tell that her confidence in him had increased somewhat. On the day he helped transport the first two tiny malaria victims 15 miles across that rugged terrain to the mission hospital, where their young lives were saved, he knew he’d won her heart.

She hadn’t called him by name for the longest time. Truth was, that was the one thing that left him feeling as though he might not ever really belong here – with her. So don’t you know his motor hummed on the day that she walked out and noticed a difference in his wear and tear, his first rusty patch?

Russ is now assured his heart belongs here too.

As you can see, “Russ” (and those like him) haven’t chosen the posh and easy lifestyle


This 333-word story was written in response to the Trifecta Weekly Challenge…but was also written to honor those who give the very best of their hearts & themselves in mission work around the world. (I have a particular fondness for many of my friends who do their greatest work in South Sudan. Though by the world’s standards, we are never on the same time, I’m so glad you are always on God’s time. All my love, -j)

Fun Sidenote (for me, anyway): About 30 minutes after I completed this story & scheduled this post, I received a text from my teenage son, out of the blue, informing me he’d decided on a name for his truck. (Backing up, this is his first vehicle & he used his entire life savings of birthday, holiday, and lawn mowing money to purchase it on his own. It has a lot of character, so I told him a couple of weeks ago he needed a good name for it.) The name he finally chose, you ask? Bocephus. I’ve been given permission to call him “Bo” for short.

If you’re interested in joining the Trifecta challenge this week, here’s the scoop:

This week’s word is:

RUSTY  (3rd definition)

3a : of the color rust  

  • Your response must be between 33 and 333 words.
  • You must use the 3rd definition of the given word in your post.
  • The word itself needs to be included in your response.
  • You may not use a variation of the word; it needs to be exactly as stated above.
  • Only one entry per writer.
  • If your post doesn’t meet our requirements, please leave your link in the comments section, not in the linkz.
  • Trifecta is open to everyone. Please join us.

– See more at:

Travel Theme: Riding Out the Ripple Effect

When we were in Amsterdam, it would have been highly improbable to have overlooked the abundance of weather vanes atop buildings. It would’ve been absolutely impossible for the abundance of bicycles to have gone unnoticed.

Living in a place where I often feel I’m the target of deranged drivers when trying to share the road while cycling, this was fascinating to me. Not only are bikes chained up one to another along the roads, but there’s an entire garage – just for bicycles!

As awesome as this is, I can’t help but wonder when this RIPPLE EFFECT began…

Thought I’d share a couple of Amsterdam pics that show both the water’s rippling effect, along with the bicycle crowding effect.

DSC_0026 (2) DSC_0047 (2)

This post is in response to Ailsa’s Wheresmybackpack travel photo challenge on RIPPLES.

Why don’t you follow the link above & post one too? Then I’ll feel like I was part of this ripple effect! 🙂

A Flagged Foto


This was a farewell foto before I left the beach last fall.

The view of the grass dunes just before accessing the white sand is so lovely, the blues of the water so intensely enticing…the eye (along with the body) is tempted to be drawn out to sea without even noticing the included message in the photo.

Perhaps the flags could go unnoticed (look to your right – yellow for caution regarding swim condition warnings, such as a deceptively hidden undertow; and blue for caution of problematic marine life, such as the jellyfish who were swarming).

In this case, the alerts are tucked away to the side to serve as an after-thought to the viewer, after he or she has been pulled by desire to heed the siren’s call.


WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: The World Through Your Eyes:

Earlier this week, photographer Ming Thein gave us an overview of the fundamentals of photography and talked about observing your subject or scene and what’s needed to create a good photograph. We see many excellent shots out there in which a photographer’s intent is clear: where he or she leads us to the photo’s subject or main focus — using light, composition, and other criteria — and is able to convey what they see in their mind at the moment of capture.

It’s that little extra something in a snapshot that transforms a photograph into something more: a visual interpretation of one’s vision. A story, captured in a frame. It’s that special skill that Ming mentioned — the photographer’s eye.

Some of you are active photographers, while others are only beginning to take pictures. Whatever your skill, we challenge you to take and share a photograph that shows a command of your frame. Lead our eyes somewhere. Make us focus on something.


Related Link:

Beach Warning Flags